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As AI advancements continue to improve speech-to-text technology, nothing has yet to match the accuracy of human transcription — especially when considering variables in speaking patterns in individuals such as children, second-language speakers, and those with disabilities. And that’s exactly where Echo Labs hopes to make an impact, specifically for higher education institutions held to particularly rigid accessibility regulations. This Transform Cohort 2 startup is working to build the first-ever AI that can produce real-time, human-quality transcription — even in adverse conditions, including high-noise environments with multiple speakers or speakers with accents. And now, the early-stage startup has just announced its close of a $7.4M funding round — the largest pre-seed raise ever completed in Chicago. Furthermore, the team shared that it has launched a new educational pilot program to officially introduce its software to a select group of universities.

Read the full Chicago Inno story here.